Tag Archives: cell phone

Driving with a GPS

This post is part of Streams of Consciousness Saturday.

My hairdresser moved about two months ago. Her business took a serious knock due to the lockdown and she could no longer afford the rent in a small shopping centre where she ran her salon. She decided to operate from her home instead.

I have always travelled about half an hour to have my hair cut. In the past I have seldom been happy with hairdressers and once I found one I liked, I stuck with her, even though she moved out towards the West Rand about five years ago. Her prices and pensioner’s discount are also the best I’ve found.

The first time I went to her home, I got lost. I had looked at the directions on Google Maps before I left and had a general idea of the first couple of kilometers. Then it was time to switch on the GPS.

I have two cell phones. The one that is connected to the cell phone network has limited connectivity (WIFI, Bluetooth and GPS) after it was dropped on its face and repaired. My backup, which is old, has limited battery life. I stopped at the side of the road to connect my main phone. Predictably, it gave me the first instruction then lost the GPS signal. I drove straight, hoping it would regain connection but it didn’t. There was nothing for it but to call on the backup. To do that, I had to pull over again, create a hotspot on my main phone and connect the backup. I connected the backup to my phone charger because I saw there was only 20% charge left although it had been fully charged just three hours earlier. I sent a message to my hairdresser saying I was running late but on my way.

By now I was in territory totally unfamiliar to me. After about five minutes, my backup phone gave me the low battery warning and then went dead. Obviously it was losing more power than it was gaining. I couldn’t switch it on again.

I was lost.

I looked at my WhatsApp messages to see that my hairdresser hadn’t read my message. I was about to phone her when she phoned me wondering where I was. In the end she came to fetch me and I followed her home and charged my flat phone while I had my hair cut so at least I could find my way home.

If we get lost using a GPS device or app, there are three possible reasons.

  1. We think we know better and ignore the instructions.
  2. Our reception of the GPS satellite is faulty or intermittent.
  3. We run out of battery on our device.

The spiritual life is like driving using a GPS device. The signal is the Holy Spirit. Jesus said, “But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth.” (John 16:13 NIV)

Romans 8:14 says, “For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God.”(NIV)

But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the Law.” (Galatians 5:18 NIV)

All Christians receive the Holy Spirit when they accept Jesus into their lives as Lord and Saviour. However, we can still get lost on our spiritual journey. This can be for similar reasons to getting lost with a GPS.

  1. We think we know better and ignore instructions.
  2. We do not hear the Spirit’s promptings because our minds are filled with too many other things. Our reception of the signal is faulty or intermittent.
  3. We have run out of power. We have not been in the habit of plugging into Jesus for daily prayer and scripture reading. We have not spent enough time with our Lord to recharge our batteries.

There is one other reason for getting lost, both in the physical drive and the spiritual walk. We misunderstand the instructions. The voice on my phone says turn right and I turn immediately into a building site when I was meant to turn at the next road.

Spiritually, it is when God calls us to something and we try to do it in our own strength immediately and run ahead of God.

I’m happy to say I have been to have my hair cut subsequently and I did not get lost. I took precautions. I made sure my backup phone was charged 100% and I plugged it into my car charger as I left. Moreover, I had gone to Google Maps on my computer and printed instructions to my destination.

I am sure there are precautions we can take in our Spiritual walk too. By constant communion with our Lord, we can make sure our spiritual batteries are charged.

My Prayer

Teach me to do Your will, For You are my God; Let Your good Spirit lead me on level ground.” (Psalm 143:10)

The All-Knowing Cell Phone

My cell phone thinks it knows better than me. It uses its past experiences, its logic and inbuilt programming to decide what is right.

Recently I can across the story of Charles (Chuck) Templeton.

He became an evangelist in 1941. In 1945 he and Torrey Johnson of Chicago met youth leaders from around the United States. They formed a working group that would become Youth for Christ. Billy Graham was their first evangelist. Shortly thereafter, Graham and Templeton undertook an evangelistic tour of western Europe for YFC.

We all know something of Billy Graham’s subsequent ministry. Charles Templeton, however, after a long struggle with doubt, declared himself an agnostic in 1957. He wrote his book, “Farewell to God,” in 1995 where he outlined his reasons for leaving the Christian faith.

Yet, in an interview with Lee Strobel shortly before his death, Charles Templeton said of Jesus, “I miss Him.”

It’s a sad story, but in some ways it reminded me of my cell phone. Using his experiences, his logic and the programming of the world around him, he set himself up as the final authority of right and wrong, fairness and unfairness, even though God has so much more experience, knowledge and wisdom than him. Just like my cell phone that thinks it knows better than I do.

Great are the works of the Lord; they are pondered by all who delight in them. Glorious and majestic are his deeds, and his righteousness endures forever. He has caused his wonders to be remembered; the Lord is gracious and compassionate. (Psalm 111 vs 2-4)

Considering how wise, powerful and loving God is, the best we can do is to trust Him and do what He says rather than what our limited intellect and experience deems right.

Doing and Being

Every Saturday morning I take my granddaughters to Brownies and Teddies, the junior branches of the Girl Guides. It is in another suburb about fifteen to twenty minutes away. While they are there, I usually take myself out to breakfast at a little bistro not far from the church hall where they meet.

This morning I sat down facing the window instead of the TV and was about to whip out my phone to check my email, or check the news, or play games or something when I caught myself. Why do I feel compelled to always be doing something instead of just being?

Instead, I just looked out the window.

sdr

I saw the beautiful Jacaranda trees in full bloom. By and by, a lady came up to the tree directly opposite me. She was wearing an apron and carried a watering can. She carefully poured water around the tree and I noticed there was a little rockery around the tree where some Clivia were growing. I saw a man carry an empty box and carefully deposit it next to a dustbin. I saw a parking guard with a luminous orange vest pick up litter as he strolled backwards and forwards. I saw doves fly past and perch in the trees.

On a whim, I checked my new tracker watch to determine my heart rate. It was lower than it’s been since I got the tracker three days ago.

Shouldn’t we spend more time being rather than doing from wake up to sleep time? Wouldn’t we appreciate more of the abundant life Christ offers us? Shouldn’t we spend more time looking at the lilies in the field?

Isn’t it strange that when we meet strangers, a stock question is “What do you do?” and never “Who are you?” It is true that often we can gauge who a person is by what they do, but not always.

I am determined to spend more of my waste time just being. Time in the car as a passenger, time walking, time eating, time relaxing. My cell phone is merely a tool, not my master. It’s all right to just look around, enjoy the world and thank God.

One-liner Wednesday. Prayer is communication.

Prayer is like having a cell phone so small it is embedded in your ear lobe.

This post is part of One-liner Wednesday

 

Below is a tiny cell phone- still not small enough though…tiny-mobile-phone-banPhoto from http://mashable.com/category/mobile-phones/